jio: Reliance Jio Q4 net profit up 24% YoY at Rs 4,174 crore | Techno Glob

Kolkata & New Delhi: Jio Platforms Ltd (JPL) reported a nearly 23% rise in net income in the fiscal fourth quarter, driven by higher data and voice consumption and growth in average revenue per user (ARPU).

But the telecoms market leader continued to lose mobile users in the third quarter, largely due to SIM card consolidation following a rate hike last December, which saw it lose mostly low-cost users.

JPL’s consolidated net profit for the March quarter was Rs 4,313 crore, compared with Rs 3,795 crore in the October-December quarter and Rs 3,510 crore a year ago, the company said in a media release on Friday.

Jio Platforms’ ARPU, a key indicator of its telecom business, rose to Rs 167.6 crore from Rs 151.6 crore in the previous quarter, driven by “better subscriber mix and growth in its fiber-to-the-home services” (read: JioFibre home broadband operations), it said a company.

“I am pleased to report strong growth in our digital services segment… JioFiber has become the largest broadband provider in India within two years of its launch,” said Mukesh D. Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries (RIL). RIL is the parent of JPL.

He added that “Reliance added more than 2.1 lakh new employees to its business last year,” with its consumer and technology businesses accounting for the majority of these new jobs.

JPL’s quarterly profit from operations rose 21.8% and 8.1% sequentially to Rs 22,261 crore, benefiting from a sharp tariff hike passed in December last year. The telco, like its rivals Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea, hiked its tariffs by 20% in the third fiscal quarter, boosting its ARPU.

“A combination of the impact of tariff hikes and higher data consumption boosted Jio’s ARPU, while customer losses were driven by the continued purge of low-cost customers as the telco looks to grow its active user base,” Rohan Dhamija, head (India & Middle East) at Analysys Mason ET reported.

Shares of RIL closed 0.8% lower at Rs 2,621.15 on the BSE on Friday. The results are announced after the market.

But Jio lost 10.9 million subscribers, with 410.2 million users at the end of March, due to continued SIM consolidation due to tariff hikes in December 2021,” said Anshuman Thakur, Director (Corporate Affairs), RIL.

Established in October 2019 as a wholly-owned unit of Reliance, JPL, the telecom business of the Mukesh Ambani-owned group, includes the country’s largest Reliance Jio Infocomm and other digital assets and investments. Reliance Jio though accounts for the majority of JPL numbers.

Joe’s standalone net profit for the quarter ended March was Rs 4,174 crore, compared with Rs 3,617 crore previously and Rs 3,372 crore a year ago. This was Joe’s 18th quarter profit, driven by higher Ebitda and lower finance costs. Jio’s quarterly Ebitda rose 10.5% to Rs 10,510 crore, well below the 15% growth estimated by Jefferies.

According to an analyst on condition of anonymity, Jio’s March net profit came in lower than expected because of “weak growth in ARPU and Ebitda in Q4”. Jefferies estimated that Jio posted a nearly 40% sequential jump in its Q4 net profit to Rs 5,000 crore with an estimated 15% sequential jump in Ebitda and an ARPU above Rs 170.

Jio’s standalone profit from operations was 8% higher at Rs 20,901 crore, compared to Rs 19,347 crore in the third fiscal quarter and Rs 17,358 crore in the year-ago period.

Jio’s average wireless data consumption per user per month increased to 19.7 GB from 18.4 GB in the fiscal third quarter. Average voice usage also increased to 968 minutes per user per month from 901 minutes last quarter.

JPL’s fourth-quarter earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) rose to 49 percent, compared with 48.6 percent in the third quarter. Its Ebitda, or operating profit, rose 9.1% sequentially to Rs 10,918 crore, below analysts’ estimates.

The telco says its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) business remains strong, with the telco enabling two-thirds of the network’s new home broadband connections in the year,” said Kiran Thomas, president of Jio. Jio is now India’s “No. 1 FTTH service provider with over 6 million connected locations,” the company said.

Thomas said Jio is “preparing for a pan-India 5G rollout” and added that the company’s mobile broadband network is 5G ready. 5G spectrum auctions are expected in early June, with Jio, Airtel, Vodafone Idea participating.

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